After many months (if not years!) of waiting, it would seem that STV HD and UTV HD (and their respective +1’s) have tied up a deal with ITV which could see them join Freesat once Ofcom approval is granted. Fingers crossed.
News story from Broadcastnow: Continue reading STV HD and UTV HD close to Freesat launch
A long-running legal dispute between the broadcasters STV and ITV has been settled amicably after the Scottish company agreed to pay ITV £18m. This could mean that STV HD will finally come to Freesat, though we suspect we might be a while off that just yet.
More on this story on the BBC news site.
In an announcement made today that STV are to sell their cinema advertising business Pearl & Dean; STV have stated the reason behind this is to refocus on its core television business.
STV have confirmed this sale will allow them to increase their investment in high definition TV services which it hopes to have in place for the 2010 World Cup.
Whilst we’ve had no official announcement (pending the sale of Pearl & Dean), we would assume this means STV intend on buying into the existing ITV1 HD service, or as rumoured over the past few months, they will broadcast STV HD. Unfortunately though the initial HD service will be limited to terrestrial (Freeview) and cable (Virgin Media) but we hope satellite (Freesat) will follow shortly after; we’ll see whether they have any firm plans in place yet.
Ok, this news is about a week old but we do receive a number of emails asking why ITV HD is not available on UTV or STV, the NI/Scottish regional ITV channel.
Both UTV and STV turned down the opportunity to receive ITV HD when it was offered to them a few months ago, and since then the only way to access ITV HD from those regions was to change your postcode to an alternative ITV region, not ideal!
Since then however Freesat have added ITV London on channel 977 as a default, so anyone can now go to that channel for ITV HD when an appropriate HD programme is on. Great! Much easier than changing postcode each time!